Language access and rights

Learn about how the City meets the needs of San Franciscans with limited English skills.

San Francisco is committed to providing residents with fair access to City services. This includes residents with limited English skills.

San Francisco's Language Access Ordinance (LAO) ensures the City provides fair language access. It is one of the strongest local language laws in the nation. 

The LAO makes sure that:

  • All City departments that serve the public provide fair language access
  • Residents have a way to report departments that don't follow the law
  • Departments can self-report that they are following the law

The Office of Civic Engagement and Immigrant Affairs (OCEIA) oversees LAO compliance. Our goal is to better serve San Francisco residents with limited English.


Language Access Ordinance

Read the full Language Access Ordinance (LAO).

Compliance reports

The annual Language Access Compliance Summary Report evaluates Citywide compliance and progress with the San Francisco Language Access Ordinance (LAO).


This report covers Fiscal Year 2022-2023 (from July 1, 2022 to June 30, 2023).

This report covers Fiscal Year 2021-2022 (from July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022).

This report covers Fiscal Year 2020-2021 (from July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021).

This report covers Fiscal Year 2019-2020 (from July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020).

For past reports, visit the Compliance Report Archives.


Annual Language Access Ordinance compliance data

See data totals from each reporting departments' annual compliance report. We collect Language Access Ordinance data through methods determined by the department's LAO liaison. Data is reported to the Office of Civic Engagement and Immigrant Affairs for an annual analysis.

San Francisco language diversity data

See language diversity maps and charts using United States Census Bureau data about what languages San Franciscans speak at home. By understanding the City's diverse language needs, we can better communicate with the populations we serve.